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 Marcel Christian Barbeau  (1925 - )

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Lived/Active: Saskatchewan / Canada/France      Known for: abstract expression painting, performance art

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Ad Code: 3
Marcel Christian Barbeau
An example of work by Marcel Christian Barbeau
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
This biography from the Archives of AskART:

Paris/Montreal, November 24, 2001

Marcel Barbeau will participate in this year's Biennale Internazionale dell'Arte Contemporanea in Florence Via invitation from the International Selection committee for the Florence Contemporary Art Biennial.   Marcel Barbeau, Canadian painter and sculptor now living in Paris, will participate in this year's 3rd edition of this important international cultural event.  The Biennial will be held from the 7th to the 16th of December at the Fortezza da Basso situated in the historical centre of Florence.

Barbeau will exhibit one of his recent works, Amour, Champagne et autres choses (Love, Champagne and Other Things), an acrylic on canvas created in December of 2000.  This work inscribes itself in the series: "Diversions and Variations", a group of large format paintings, which were exhibited in the spring and summer of 2000 at the Galerie Montcalm in Hull and at the Maison de la Culture Côte-des- Neiges in Montreal, Quebec.  For Barbeau, these compositions of ephemeral three-dimensional objects, which melt into the plane, apparent themselves, in their free structured coloured tonalities, and strongly contrasting dissonances, to contemporary music for which Barbeau has had a passionate interest since 1958.

Major figure of Canadian art, pioneer of expressive abstraction at the core of the Automatist movement in the forties, Marcel Barbeau evolved in the fifties towards a more structured art, without ever forsaking the lyric expressiveness of his youth. Marcel Barbeau had already exhibited in Italy, between the years 1962-1992, within the framework of various cultural events.

More recently, in the winter of 2001, he participated in the renown Salon de Mai in Paris.  The film Barbeau, Libre comme l'art, which examines the artist and his oeuvre, could be seen at the FIFA (Festival international des films sur l'art de Montreal) in March 2000, as well as at the Festival international des films d'art et pedagogiques, in December of 2000 at Unesco in Paris.

One can find more information on the artist's career and oeuvre and namely the series "Diversion and Variations" on the artist's web site:

This biography from the Archives of AskART:
The following is from Ninon Gauthier, art historian who is completing the extensive catalogue on this artist:

Marcel Barbeau was born in Montreal, Canada in 1925.  He was a member of the Automatistes Group and signatory of this Canadian abstract expressionist art movement in 1948.  He was a pioneer of abstract painting and sculpture in Canada in the mid-forties.  He has lived, worked and exhibited in the United States between 1964 and 1971.

He has currently been involved in performances with dancer and musicians since 1972 (Caen, France).

His works are in most Canadian art museums and in a few public galleries in the United States and in Europe among which the Chrysler Museum, the Rose Art Museum, the British Museum (London), Stedelijk Museum (Amsterdam).

He currently lives in Paris (France) spending a few months a year in North America.

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